The House on the Edge of the Park 1980

Discussion in 'Movies' started by BLUEPLANET, Apr 25, 2012.



    The House on the Edge of the Park (1980)

    Alex, a psychopathic mechanic, rapes a woman in the park. Later, a decadent couple pull into his shop needing car repair. They invite Alex and his mentally challenged buddy to join them at a decadent suburban party. Once there, Alex amuses himself by tormenting and raping the guests, not realizing the guests have an agenda of their own.

    David Hess reprises his role as sadistic rapist in exploitation king Ruggero Deodato's loose sequel to Wes Craven's genre definer The Last House on the Left . This deliriously sleazy video nasty has been banned or cut the world over - it is still refused classification in Australia and was only recently made available in Britain, albeit with 11 minutes of 'eroticised sexual violence and gross violence' cut.

    The film kicks off in true exploitation form - a brutal rape spliced in with the credits, where we see our antagonist Alex strangling a woman in the back seat of his car. Fast forward to where the action really happens - a young rich couple on their way to a party arrive at Alex's and his retarded friend Ricky's (think Of Mice and Men ) garage wanting a motor problem rectified. The issue is fixed and Alex and Ricky tag along to the yuppie party in a secluded luxury home. After pleasantries are exchanged with the several remaining guests, Alex and Ricky hold the group hostage, subjecting them to various sexual tortures.

    The title of Deodato's film is sure to automatically evoke comparisons to Craven's no-budget morality tale - the fact is both are vastly different movies. Calling this a rip off isn't exactly fair - while Last House on the Left is vastly better, it was not nearly as exploitative enough to be considered one of the sub-genre's greats; Deodato and Hess' devilish collaboration does, however, fit the bill nicely. In addition, the yuppies in the titular location almost enjoy the torture Alex and Ricky put them through - the women engage in consentual sex with their torturers after their boyfriend's are roughed up and they are very flirtatious, even when horrific acts of violence are being committed against them. Therefore, Deodato's effort is not nearly as difficult to watch as Craven's. The House on the Edge of the Park is nonetheless very brutal stuff - the rapes are dysfunctional in their explicitness however the non-sexual violence was fairly tame. (Too) young-looking Italian soft-core star Brigitte Petronio is the subject of all the film's nastiest bits. If I was to fault it, I was disappointed at all the sex - the movie was essentially a rape and revenge (the second part happened only in the final ten minutes) flick with sex as its raison-d'etre, but Deodato could have put a little bit more action and taken away some of the pervasive sleaziness. All in all, this was decent exploitation and certainly a must see for a fan of the genre.


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